Apple IIe 3.5 inch FDD

From: Rich Beaudry <>
Date: Tue Sep 23 06:46:47 2003

> Is it possibl;e to modify a standard IBM 3.5 inch FDD to
> work with the apple??

As other pointed out, no....

> I understand the Apple II uses a
> special drive interface, can this be conected up to the 3.5 inch drive
> hardware and be used to drive them??

You can't hook up a Disk II or 5.25" controller to a 3.5" disk drive..

However, a 3.5" drive can be used in an Apple IIe (not sure about II, II+).
There are two possible combinations:

- Apple sold a drive called a UniDisk 3.5. This drive had a processor and
buffer memory inside the case to allow it to buffer and effectively slow
down the data transfer rate to the point where the Apple IIe could handle
it. You still need to get a special controller card (often referred to as a
"LIRON" card, because the word was silkscreened on the card).

- Apple also sold a 3.5" drive controller card that had the
processor/buffers/logic on the card, so you could use the standard 800KB
drives from an Apple IIgs in an Apple IIe. This card also had the
capability to drive Macintosh 1.44MB drives (so you could get 1.44MB on an
Apple IIe!!). Coincidentally, I have one of these for auction on eBay right
now (search for seller "rbeaudry") :-). You'd still need to get drives, but
Apple IIgs 800KB drives are cheap and plentiful (in fact, I have several
spares I could make available).

Confusingly, both card were named by Apple as "3.5 controller cards", so be
careful when looking fo rthem that you get the right card/drive

Rich B.
Received on Tue Sep 23 2003 - 06:46:47 BST

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